Mastery is made of New Beginnings

"Ordinarily, I go to the woods alone, with not a single
friend, for they are all smilers and talkers and therefore
unsuitable." - Mary Oliver


Rather than explore one theme, at the end of this month I have a gathering of personal reflections from our practice of New Beginnings and Mastery.

Each sequence has different effects. Some are calming, some energizing. This month built my focus, my abilityto get things done that had evaded me so far. A growing sense of Mastery to be sure. 

May one or some be useful to you:

1. Where I go, what I do, after sadhana/daily practice/class matters. When I paid attention to this I  made space for my thoughts to soar. I sought spaces of inspiration, wonder, and work. I saved specific tasks for this moment. Special conversations. Reconnections.  Ruminations and decisions. In sadhana I move and breathe, clear my focus, chant into and through hesitation and doubt. Then I walked in the woods with pad and pencil to catch my thoughts or I untangled disorder in my house or schedule. The outcome has been more than tidy or ordered. It feels blessed. I feel skilled. I share what I have. It is more than enough. 
Consider where you go, what you do after practice. How can you best put it to use?

2.  (This was a big one) As we practice, we can begin to notice what stops us - our Resistance (as I wrote of last time). Ordinarily, we can be so familiar with our habits and patterns that we can't perceive them. They feel like the only options available. Noticing our resistance in our practice builds self-awareness. The same mechanism we build to hear Resistance is also how we hear our Callings. The more skillful our inner listening, the more familiar we are with ourselves in general - our habits, patterns, stories, desires, inclinations, aversions. Keep practicing. Keep listening. Keep discerning. Notice what stops you. The whispers and doubts. Write them down. Pay attention. Soon how you want to act or speak will become clearer.  What chatter and stories come from negative thought habits? What's your true voice saying? 

3.   This sequence served to clear my head. The steady quality of our breath of fire calmed my nervous system.  As we moved from the base of the seat through the crown of the head, I felt a shift towards a higher vibration of trust and clarity. Off the mat I found moments of provocation that would ordinarily spark anger were easier to handle. I had more grace. More options. My contribution to the day is to master my responses. All my interactions spread from there so that I can  become a magnet for self-mastery in others rather than conflict or concern. How can you use your practice to shift/bless your context?

4. My initial resistance to chanting came from its unfamiliarity. It felt as if the words belonged to someone far away. I felt their rhythm and vibration but less their meaning.  This month I made mantra mine. I claimed my sound for myself. These words and sounds move through me just as they move through a far distant Guru. This is their gift. I had to decide they are not borrowed from outside, sounded momentarily, but come from inside and inhabited fully. Like my own hands. Mine. What are you holding away that is waiting to be yours? 

The next 4 classes are the last of this sequence. Don't miss out!
Tuesday at noon at Midtown
Wednesday at noon at Midtown
Wednesday at 7:30 pm at Midtown
Thursday at noon at Fells Point

This month's sequence is on my website
The playlist is on Spotify marthamcalpine JUNE2016

You can always bring a friend for free and sign them in as my guest.  Bring them. Show them. Let them see for themselves why your eyes are so bright.

With much love and full of June light ~ martha xx

PS. I was asked three times this week what I was watching lately. These videos recently caught my attenion. Enjoy!
Jonah Lehar on grit/genius from The School of Life  
Harvard School of Education student speech 
Simon Sinek on leadership on Marie Forleo